The big story the last time D.C. United and FC Dallas met this season was Dax McCarty's first meeting against his former team. Now, McCarty has been sent to New York, and the return match in Dallas is merely a battle between two teams fighting to secure playoff positions in their respective conferences.
D.C. United (5-5-7) at FC Dallas (10-5-4)
When: 9:00 p.m., Saturday, July 16.
Where: Pizza Hut Park, Frisco, TX
TV: Comcast SportsNet
Team News And Tactics
D.C. United: The club's website brings us the news that Josh Wolff is questionable with a strained hamstring. If Wolff can't go, look for United to bring Joseph Ngwenya back into the starting line-up alongside Charlie Davies. Dejan Jakovic (strained hamstring) is listed as probable and seems likely to at least make the bench tonight, possibly with an eye toward returning to action Wednesday at home against New England. Brazilian midfielder Fred will have his stay with United extended through Wednesday's match after being originally scheduled to depart for Australia and his new club, Melbourne Heart, after this game. Melbourne agreed to United's request for an extension earlier this week.
FC Dallas: Daniel Hernandez (right knee) seems set to take up his defensive midfielder position in the lineup after missing FC Dallas' last two games. Ricardo Villar should replace Andrew Jacobson in the midfield after the latter suffered a right hamstring injury in last weekend's 2-0 loss at Real Salt Lake. Look for FC Dallas to play a 4-1-4-1 with Hernandez playing in front of the back four and Marvin Chavez leading the line ahead of a midfield foursome of Jackson, Brek Shea, Villar, and Eric Alexander.
Key To The Game
Contain Brek Shea: The 21-year-old Shea is a terror on the left wing, with eight goals so far this season (tied for second-most in the league with United's Charlie Davies). The onus will be on whoever United's left defender is (likely Perry Kitchen) to prevent Shea from making one of his terrifying breaks forward with the ball.